Creamy, "cheesy", and comforting this Vegan Cashew Mac 'n Cheese with Peas is my little ones' absolute favorite. It's made with just 9 ingredients and is ready in about 20 minutes.
Mac 'n cheese and childhood go together like...well macaroni and cheese so going vegan shouldn't mean sacrificing this staple of childhood. This Vegan Cashew Mac 'n Cheese with Peas tastes so amazing, no one will miss the blue box stuff one bit.
We've tried a lot of vegan mac 'n cheese dishes over the years, both homemade recipes and a few store bought varieties. And while we have found a few we enjoy, whenever asked my little ones always want this version and always with peas. It's their absolute favorite and to me that's the best compliment in the world.
I can't say I disagree with them either. It's everything you want in a mac 'n cheese - creamy, comforting, and so satisfying.
The best part is this only requires one pot and your blender. Just add the peas to cook with the pasta, blend the sauce, and return everything to the same pot to combine when ready. That's it, super simple!
Cashews are the base for the "cheese" sauce along with a good bit of nutritional yeast and a few other ingredients you likely already have in the pantry.
A high speed blender does work the best for this, but may not be totally necessary. It will probably just take a bit longer in a standard blender and may require a bit more water to get everything smooth.
One more thing to note, this recipe does make a lot. We're a family of 5 and this amount allows everyone to have a second helping if they like and have lunch for my husband at work the next day. You can easily half the recipe if you don't need as much.
If cashews are a no go for you or your family or you'd just like something lower in fat try my also very delicious cashew-less mac 'n cheese.
If you try this recipe, let me know how it turns out! Leave a comment and a rating below or snap a pic and tag it @weelittlevegans on Instagram so I’ll be sure to see it!
- 4 cups elbow pasta
- 2 ½ cups frozen peas
- 2 cups cashew pieces, soaked in water for at least 4 hours See recipe notes for an alternative method
- ¾ cup nutritional yeast
- 1 ½ cup water
- 2 teaspoon dijon mustard
- ¾ teaspoon salt + more to taste
- dash of pepper
- juice of 1 lemon
Prepare elbow pasta according to package instructions. You can add the peas to the same pot at the same time as pasta.
In a high speed blender combine remaining ingredients and blend on high until smooth and creamy.
Taste and adjust salt to your liking.
Return drained pasta and peas to large pot.
Add sauce and stir to combine.
If you don't have time to soak cashews use this quick method. Place cashews in a sauce pan and cover with water. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Continue to boil for 15 minutes to soften cashews. Drain water and proceed with recipe. I almost always use this method and boil the cashews while the pasta is cooking.
I am a vegetarian attempting to eliminate plastic in my life, which rules out almost all cheese. I made this recipe tonight and it was amazing! I used canned peas (all the frozen peas came in plastic) and I added garlic. It was so quick, easy, convenient, and most importantly, delicious! Thank you for sharing.
Thats awesome! I'm absolutely thrilled you like it! The garlic sounds like a lovely addition, I'll have to add some to our next batch. I admire and appreciate your efforts to go plastic free. We try our best to use as little as we can, but it's so tough because it's everywhere. Thank you for sharing how the recipe turned out!